Norbert and Thierry swap cars in a unique showcase
Circuit Zolder in Belgium played host to an exciting demonstration of our electric and hybrid technology on Saturday as part of the FIA ETCR race weekend.
In a unique cross-over event, our all-electric Veloster N ETCR was joined on the 4.010km Zolder track by our hybrid-powered i20 N Rally1 car. Joining the celebrations was our Belgian WRC star Thierry, who partnered with ETCR driver Norbert for a thrilling car swap experience.
Norbert was first to take to the track, swapping his Veloster N ETCR for the i20 N Rally1 car, with Thierry on co-driver duties.
“I have been looking forward to this day ever since it was announced,” said a delighted Norbert. “The i20 N Rally1 feels fantastic and with his advice you could get the feeling and build confidence. You can feel the hybrid system working. The power and acceleration that the car delivers are great.”
His co-driver Thierry added: “I think Norbi did very well for having only two laps of experience with a WRC car. With a few little tips, we were already close to the limit in some corners. It was also good to show him how the WRC hybrid system works, which is completely new for this year, and different to full electric.”
It was then Thierry’s turn to drive the Veloster N ETCR, his first taste of an all-electric race car, with Norbert on hand for expert advice.
“What a great experience!” he said. “This was my first time driving an electric race car and it was totally different to anything I have done before. The 500kW of power was instantaneous and very aggressive. I enjoyed it. I have done TCR races before but maybe in the future I will join an electric race as well.”
“From the first moment, he knew what to do in the Veloster N ETCR,” said Norbert. “He knew the reference points and his rhythm was just right. He was confident with the rear of the car. If he had five laps more, you would not realise it was a rally driver. I was impressed.”
The show culminated in Thierry putting his WRC car through its paces with Norbert in the co-driving seat. The pair trusted fully in each other’s driving skills as they compared and contrasted the all-electric ETCR car with the hybrid power of the WRC vehicle, while having a lot of fun along the way.
Our Deputy Team Director Julien said: “Our demonstration event in Zolder has been the perfect opportunity for us to showcase everything that Hyundai Motorsport and Hyundai’s high-performance N brand stands for: innovative car technology, teamwork, fun and excitement. It was clear that Thierry and Norbert had a lot of enjoyment behind the wheel, sharing tips and comparing the two cars.”